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Posts for September, 2015

Old Culture War Soldiers Don’t Even Fade Away

Jim Burroway

September 21st, 2015

Eric_FanningOn Friday, President Barack Obama announced that he was nominating Eric K. Fanning as Secretary of the Army. Fanning’s qualifications are pretty solid. He had been serving as undersecretary for the Army since last June. Before that, he was chief of staff for Defense Secretary Ash Carter. His long career with the Pentagon included stints as undersecretary for the Air Force and Navy. He had been a specialist for security matters at the Pentagon for the past two decades, and he also played key roles in overseeing some of the Pentagon’s largest shipbuilding and jet fighter programs.

He also happens to be gay, and if his nomination is approved by the Republican-controlled Senate, he will be the first openly gay leader of a branch of the U.S. military. As far as GOP presidential candidate and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, that detail wipes the rest of Fanning’s distinguished career from the record:

Mike_Huckabee_in_2007_in_Washington_DC_at_the_Values_Voters_conference-645x325“It’s clear President Obama is more interested in appeasing America’s homosexuals than honoring America’s heroes,” the former Arkansas governor said in a statement released by his campaign. “Veterans suicide is out-of-control and military readiness is dangerously low, yet Obama is so obsessed with pandering to liberal interest groups he’s nominated an openly gay civilian to run the Army. Homosexuality is not a job qualification. The U.S. military is designed to keep Americans safe and complete combat missions, not conduct social experiments.”

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who’s also running for the GOP presidential nomination, isn’t too terribly far behind, saying, “I certainly hope that the secretary of the Army is being nominated because the President wants the right person to defend our nation and not because he is looking to make a political statement on issues of sexual orientation unrelated to defending this nation and keeping us safe.” Having spoke his mind (such as it is), Cruz then claimed that he will “wait until his confirmation hearing to assess his record on the merits.”

Huckabee keeps children from school today

Timothy Kincaid

September 8th, 2015

East Carter County High, East Carter Middle School and some east side elementary schools will not be open due to the expected congestion caused by the rally and the appearance of Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, who is coming to visit Kim Davis in jail.

Mike Huckabee on Kim Davis

Timothy Kincaid

September 2nd, 2015

GOP Presidential pretender and Baptist pastor Mike Huckabee has called Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis to offer her prayers and support. He’s also opined on the legality of the situation.

“Because Congress has made no law allowing for same sex marriage, Kim does not have the Constitutional authority to issue a marriage license to homosexual couples,” Mr. Huckabee said.

As they say on So You Think You Can Dance, sorry Mike but your lack of technical training is showing.

Rubio Records Robocall for NOM

Jim Burroway

November 2nd, 2012

GOP Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), who has been identified as a rising star in national politics, is making robocalls on behalf of the National Organization for Marriage to voters in Maine, Maryland and Washington state, where marriage equality is on the ballot (Minnesota, which is considering a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage, prohibits robocalls.) And in a sign that marriage is still seen as a wedge issue, those calls are also going out to the swing states of Wisconsin, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Also making calls for NOM are former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and Focus on the Family co-founder James Dobson.

Huckabee Thinks GOP Too “Ideologically Pure”

Jim Burroway

July 1st, 2011

Tom McClusky, Vice President for Government Affairs for Family “Research” Council, is furious — furious! that the Republican National Committee has tapped Log Cabin Republicans Executive Director R. Clarke Cooper to serve on its Finance Committee, where, according to an RNC news release “he will be playing a critical role in raising funds for the party’s efforts to elect Republicans to the White House and across the country.” McClusky is spitting bullets, telling his readers that they “should NEVER donate to the Republican Party” (all CAPS his). American Family Association trots out its concern troll as well.

These developments come on the same day in which Mike Huckabee (!) complained that the GOP has become too focused on ideological purity:

I’m not sure a guy like me can win in the atmosphere of the current Republican party. We’ve become a party of such fractured purity. It’s all or nothing, now or never. It’s not whether the government functions, it’s whether the government is ideologically pure.

Huckabee Proposes the Re-education of the American Mind

Jim Burroway

March 31st, 2011

Former Arkansas governor and GOP presidential Mike Huckabee spoke at the Rediscover God in America conference in Iowa last weekend. Before launching into his speech, Huckabee gave a shout-out to Christian historical revisionist David Barton. Barton, who is touted as a “historian” at the conference despite having no discernible credentials, holds that America was founded as an explicitly Christian nation and presents what he calls a “holy history” of America. Last October, Barton called on the U.S. government to “regulate homosexuality.”

Barton introduced Huckabee at he Rediscover God in America conference. Huckabee thanked Barton for his introduction and said, “I just wish that every single young person in america would be able to be under his tutelage and understand something about who we are as a nation. I almost wish there would be like a simultaneous telecast, and all Americans would be forced — forced, at gunpoint no less — to listen to every David Barton message. And I think our country would be better for it.”

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I seem to recall North Vietnam doing something along those lines…

Okay, I know that he appears to be joking — the audience is laughing as though he were. But remember, this is the guy who defended the suggestion that gay men with HIV should have been rounded up and quarantined back in the day. And when he said that, he definitely wasn’t joking. In fact, he carefully parsed his message in order to try to make himself clear. So let’s just say that I haven’t the capacity for giving him even the smallest smidgeon of the benefit of doubt on this one.

Huckabee went on to call for “spiritual warriors” in a battle that “pits good against evil.” Among those evils: marriage equality:

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Other possible GOP contenders speaking at the conference included former House speaker Newt Gingrich, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), and Mississippi governor Haley Barbour.

Newt Gingrich Promises To “Slow Down” Gay Rights Progress

Jim Burroway

March 30th, 2011

New Gingrich is running for President like it’s 1996.

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Gingrich is the third major GOP figure running for president to appear on American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer’s radio program. Fischer has said that LGBT people should be legally disqualified from holding public office because “gay sex is a form of domestic terrorism” and should be declared a felony. And he is attracting a line of GOP presidential hopefuls to his microphone. Warren Throckmorton asks, “Is Bryan Fischer the new GOP Kingmaker?

Mike Huckabee on Obama’s DOMA Decision

Jim Burroway

February 25th, 2011

Obviously, he’s not happy with it. He also hints that if he became president, he would re-impose “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

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On DOMA, Social Conservatives Howl While Pols Shrug

Jim Burroway

February 25th, 2011

By virtually any measure, the Obama Administration’s announcement that they will no longer argue that the so-called “Defense of Marriage Act” is constitutional portends a monumental shift, with repercussions we are all still trying to sort out. Anti-gay activists are, predictably, howling with rage, calling on Congress to intervene. But as we noted, House speaker John Boehner refused to take the bait, and is instead sticking to his promised focus on slashing the budget. The New York Times noticed similarly tepid reactions among many other political conservatives:

In the hours that followed, Sarah Palin’s Facebook site was silent. Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, was close-mouthed. Tim Pawlenty, the former governor of Minnesota, released a Web video — on the labor union protests in Wisconsin — and waited a day before issuing a marriage statement saying he was “disappointed.”

Others, like Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker, and Haley Barbour, the governor of Mississippi, took their time weighing in, and then did so only in the most tepid terms. “The Justice Department is supposed to defend our laws,” Mr. Barbour said.

Asked if Mitch Daniels, the Republican governor of Indiana and a possible presidential candidate, had commented on the marriage decision, a spokeswoman said that he “hasn’t, and with other things we have going on here right now, he has no plans.”

Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, who is also believed to be a presidential contender, is among the few to come out strongly against the Administration’s decision, calling children being raised by LGBT parents “our little guinea pigs.” Mark McKinnon, a Republican strategist for President Bush’s 2004 campaign which deployed marriage as a major wedge issue to turn out conservative voters, may well be right: “The wedge has lost its edge,” he told the Times. Of course, there’s still plenty of time for that to change between now and 2012.

Anti-Gay Activists React to DOMA Announcement

Jim Burroway

February 23rd, 2011

Brian Brown from National Organization for Marriage lost his already limited capacity for original thought and channels John Paul Jones:

We have not yet begun to fight for marriage,” said Brian Brown, president of NOM.“The Democrats are responding to their election loss with a series of extraordinary, extra-constitutional end runs around democracy, whether it’s fleeing the state in Wisconsin and Indiana to prevent a vote, or unilaterally declaring homosexuals a protected class under our Constitution, as President Obama just did,” said Brown. “We call on the House to intervene to protect DOMA, and to tell the Obama administration they have to respect the limits on their power. This fight is not over, it has only begun!”

Maggie Gallagher chimes in:

On the one hand this is a truly shocking extra-constitutional power grab in declaring gay people are a protected class, and it’s also a defection of duty on the part of the President Obama,” said Maggie Gallagher, Chairman of NOM, “On the other hand, the Obama administration was throwing this case in court anyway. The good news is this now clears the way for the House to intervene and to get lawyers in the court room who actually want to defend the law, and not please their powerful political special interests.”

Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver, who charged that allowing same-sex marriages would lead to an epidemic of violent crime, called Obama the most divisive President in US History:

Regardless of President Obama’s own ideological agenda, as President, he and his Attorney General have a duty to defend lawfully passed legislation, especially when the essence of the law has been upheld by many courts. Thirty states have passed marriage amendments affirming marriage as one man and one woman. Today President Obama has abandoned his role as President of the United States and transformed his office into the President of the Divided States. He has been the most divisive president in American history. He has today declared war on the American people and the fundamental values that are shared by most Americans. His radicalism resulted in the historical push-back in the 2010 elections. His radicalism today will come back around when the people respond to this betrayal in 2012,” said Staver.

Focus On the Family’s Tom Minnery wants Congressional Republicans to drop whatever they’re doing and pick up the flag:

“We would hope Congress uses the tools at its disposal to counter this decision and defend marriage,” Minnery said.

What should Congress do? Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins wants Congress to take Holder’s bait by dropping their “only interested in the deficit” mantra and reveal what many suspect to be their true colors:

“With this decision the President has thrown down the gauntlet, challenging Congress. It is incumbent upon the Republican leadership to respond by intervening to defend DOMA, or they will become complicit in the President’s neglect of duty,” concluded Perkins.

American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer, who recently said that he would “fight to the last ditch” for marriage discrimination, has Perkins’s back:

“I think it’s a clear sign that we simply cannot avoid engaging on the social issues,” Bryan Fischer, director of issue analysis for the group, told TPM. “Mitch Daniels has called for a truce on social issues and that would be fine if the homosexual lobby was willing to lay down arms, but they’re obviously not and this proves it. A truce is nothing more than a surrender.”

So far, House Speaker John Boehner is staying on message and has declined to take the bait:

A spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, criticized the administration change of position. “While Americans want Washington to focus on creating jobs and cutting spending, the president will have to explain why he thinks now is the appropriate time to stir up a controversial issue that sharply divides the nation,” said spokesman Brendan Buck.

Update: Potential GOP Presidential candidate and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee found a clever way to blame gay marriage for increasing the deficit:

Nonetheless, Huckabee opposes gay marriage on the grounds that, according to him, it destroys traditional families.  “There is a quantified impact of broken families,” Huckabee said. “[There is a] $300 billion dad deficit in America every year…that’s the amount of money that we spend as taxpayers to pick up the pieces because dads are derelict in their duties.”

Far Right gathers for Value Voters weekend

Timothy Kincaid

September 17th, 2010

Earlier this month we discussed the wackadoodle extravaganza which was the Taking America Back convention. But this weekend, that seminar’s cousin the 2010 Value Voters Summit is meeting for roughly the same purpose: rallying the troops to impose their religious beliefs on non-believers by use of governmental force. And while Taking America Back consisted primarily of the delusional, the excitable, and the social misfits, the Family Research Council’s Value Voters Summit draws “respectable” activists and recognizable politicians.

But make no mistake, the agenda of the Voter Voters Summit is no less radical or unAmerican than that of its low-rent cousin. And no small part of their obsession is on the extent to which gay people should be disallowed from participating in society.

The plenary session presentations consist of:

* We Still Hold These Truths: Rediscovering Our Principles, Reclaiming Our Future
* ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Panel
* We the People: The Tea Party’s Place in American Politics
* Parental Choice Education: Beyond One-Size-Fits-All Schools
* Hollywood Panel

Although only one of the five plenary discussions focuses solely on gay issues, it is without question that much of the other sessions will also be dedicated to “opposing the homosexual agenda”. That is, after all, the number one complaint that social conservatives have with the schools and Hollywood. And for those who really want to spend their weekend on nothing but “evil sodomites”, they can attend Saturday’s 3:30 breakout session entitled The falsehood of the inevitability of same-sex “marriage”.

The entire event will be filled with speeches and presentations by familiar names in the anti-gay movement. But unlike Taking America Back, most of these have social grace and appearance of sanity. With one notable exception: the American Family Association’s Bryan Fischer will be speaking tomorrow morning and is likely to spout things that are so irrational as to confuse even that sympathetic audience.

These conferences are useful; they help us separate political opponents from those who truly are devoted enemies of our lives, freedoms and liberties. Many conservative Republicans hold positions that are unfavorable to us, but do so more from ignorance or distorted principle than out of zealous animus. But those who participate at these conferences do so because the believe that they are authorized by God to destroy our cause and our lives.

This year, perhaps even more than most, participation at the Value Voters Summit is a clear indication of animus towards the gay community. And by going there this year, politicians are making a visible statement that they are not just in disagreement with some of our cause but rather that they see us as a threat and an enemy and that they will do whatever they can to harm us.

Most of these names will not surprise us:

Governor Mike Huckabee
Senator Jim Inhofe (R-OK)
Senator Jim DeMint (R-S.C.)
Representative Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.)
Representative Mike Pence (R-Ind.)
Governor Mitt Romney
Senator Rick Santorum
Christine O’Donnell
Newt Gingrich
Governor Bob McDonnell (R-Va.)
Governor Tim Pawlenty (R-Minn.) (via video)
Representative Gregg Harper (R-Miss.)

Mike Huckabee wouldn’t know integrity if it bit him in the butt

Timothy Kincaid

May 3rd, 2010

Eternal Republican candidate and advocate for having theology dictate legislation Mike Huckabee got together with fellow social conservative Sean Hannity to rag on Rosie O’Donnell and have a good old-fashioned “Christians are victims” jawing. And, it seems, when in friendly company, sometimes Huckabee can just get carried away by victimhood, exaggeration, and hyperbole and say something truly stupid.

Naturally, there was lots of whining about how unfair it is to see his dedication to harming gay people, their lives, their freedoms and their equality and think he must “somehow be bigoted.” (Really! what a notion!) And how it is intolerant to not respect his intolerance.

Poor, pitiful him.

Amusingly, just a moment before he had described his desire to not allow Rosie O’Donnell to adopt as being “not a personal thing.” She should just get over it, he’s already called dibs on the martyr label.

But I digress.

The real moment of surreality, the true wait-there-must-be-a-punchline-coming comment came when he whimpered about how he’s not so bad, or no worse than anyone else.

As I tell people, my position on same-sex marriage is the same that Joe Biden, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and the voters in 30 states where it’s been on the ballot —



So Huckabee thinks that his ‘position is the same’ as those who support civil unions? His ‘position is the same’ as those who oppose anti-gay amendments? Huckabee’s ‘positions are the same’ as those states which protected the word “marriage” but deliberately chose not to ban relationship recognition.

No, that’s not Mike Huckabee’s position on same-sex marriage. Nope, that would just be a lie. Huckabee’s position on same-sex marriage is:

I can assure you I believe in a constitutional amendment that prohibits same-sex marriages, and I do not believe in civil unions. Never have and never will.

I swear, Mike Huckabee wouldn’t recognize honesty and truthfulness if they sidled up and bit him on the butt to get his attention.

All in all, it’s probably a good thing changed his previous occupation and ran for office. Politicians do, on whole, have even a slightly worse reputation than preachers so he’s right at home.

Polygamy, Incest, Drug Use, and Puppies

Jim Burroway

April 14th, 2010

Former Arkansas Gov. and possible GOP Presidential contender Mike Huckabee is really on a tear:

Mike Huckabee, a possible Republican presidential candidate in 2012, says the effort to allow gays and lesbians to marry is comparable to legalizing incest, polygamy and drug use.

Huckabee also told college journalists last week that gay couples should not be permitted to adopt. “Children are not puppies,” he said.

…Huckabee told the interviewer that not every group’s interests deserve to be accommodated, if their lifestyle is outside of what he called “the ideal.”

“That would be like saying, well there’s there are a lot of people who like to use drugs so let’s go ahead and accommodate those who want to use drugs. There are some people who believe in incest, so we should accommodate them. There are people who believe in polygamy, should we accommodate them?” he said, according to a transcript of the interview.

Huckabee obviously sees this as a winning path to the GOP nomination as the party lurches farther to the right. But of course, this is no cynical political position; Huckabee believes this to his very core. He has previously compared same-sex marriage to bestiality, and in 1992 advocating quarantining indefinitely everyone who was HIV-positive. During his 2008 run for the GOP nomination, he said that we should “amend the Constitution so it’s in God’s standards.”

With that kind of belief, it should come as no surprise that Huckabee’s ties to Christian Reconstructionists run quite deep with longtime associations with Bill Gothard and George Grant, who cowrote Huckabee’s 1998 book, Kids Who Kill: Confronting out Culture of Violence. In that book Huckabee and Grant blamed the Columbine and Jonesboro school shootings on a general breakdown in morality on all fronts:

Indeed, it is now difficult to keep track of the vast array of publicly endorsed and institutionally supported aberrations — from homosexuality and pedophilia to sadomasochism and necrophilia. As we refuse to stand for morality, we easily fall into serving immorality.

Huckabee vs. Coulter: “I’m More Anti-Gay Than You”

Jim Burroway

January 12th, 2009

This is what the far right has sunk to: who is more anti-gay?

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Is it any wonder that nine out of ten nine-Evangelicals think Christianity is “too anti-homosexual” — and 80% of Christians of all stripes agree?

But this kind of debate is going on as a man who says out loud that being gay is a “compulsion” like kleptomania and likens gays to barnyard animals is running to head the Republican Party. At least he appears to be pulling ahead of Chip “Barack the Magic Negro” Saltsman for the time being. Meanwhile, the Log Cabin Republicans are in serious financial straits, which means that the one Republican voice for gay issues will be weaker in 2009.

The self-destruction of the Grand Old Party continues.

LaBarbera Award: Mike Huckabee

Jim Burroway

November 18th, 2008

The LaBarbera AwardFormer Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee is our latest LaBarbera Award winner for suggesting that gays haven’t been beaten enough to earn the right to marry.

Huckabee appeared on ABC’s “The View,” where he had this exchange with host Joy Behar about same-sex marriage:

HUCKABEE: It’s a different set of rights. People who are homosexuals should have every right in terms of their civil rights, to be employed, to do anything they want. But that’s not really the issue. I know you talked about it and I think you got into it a little bit early on. But when we’re talking about a redefinition of an institution, that’s different than individual civil rights.

BEHAR: Well, segregation was an institution, too, in a way. It was right there on the books.

HUCKABEE: But here is the difference. Bull Connor was hosing people down in the streets of Alabama. John Lewis got his skull cracked on the Selma bridge.

Huckabee appears to suggest that civil rights must meet some sort of minimum violence test. If so, then gays and lesbians certainly meet that test, all too sadly. In the most recent set of hate crime statistics released by the FBI, there were nine murders logged as hate crime incidents in 2007. Of those, five were attributed to sexual orientation, two to race, and two to ethnicity/national origin.

And that toll continues unabated this year with the murders of Lawrence King, Simmie Williams, Jr., Tony Randolph Hunter, and Angie Zapata. Just last Friday Moses “Teish” Cannon was shot and killed with a .22-caliber rifle.

It is beyond outrageous and disgusting for Huckabee to suggest that violence is a determining factor on whether any group deserves equal rights. Which is why he is now a two-time winner of the LaBarbera Award.

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